Tuesday, March 25, 2014

We made our way to ENGLAND!

Well, hello....
Greetings from England!!
(I think this should be my new symbol---I am American born but now, a UK resident!)
I'm trying to embrace it folks!! 

We have finally made it to England and it was quite the trip! 
If you'd care to know how this adventurous trip happened, keep reading::

After many sad and tearful goodbyes leading up to the day, finally arrived at the airport.  We were sent off by some great friends!! While there were MANY tears and "see you laters", we pulled ourselves together and went through TSA. After a small wait, we got on a small plane that left Kansas and went to Chicago, for our layover.
 It didn't take long for my littlest one to fall fast asleep since it was nap time!
 Once we got to Chicago, we got a quick bit to eat before loading up on the next plane.
 This plane was huge!! Our family had to be separated on this flight, so daddy and Madison sat together...
 and Kayden and I hung out together!
 This was our sweet dinner we were served---but to it's credit, it wasn't that bad!
 Kayden enjoyed it---as he enjoy most food! :)
 He was eating his dessert and watching Frozen...he was in heaven!!
 This was a "landing card" that we got from the stewardess before we landed. I had NO clue what it was and why we needed it but like any good passenger, I filled it out.  Come to find out, everyone has to compete this card and give it to customs when entering the country.  
After a 2 hour bus ride from the airport in London, we finally arrived at the base. The skies were just gorgeous and those clouds looked so puffy!! 
 This is a beautiful tree that was on the playground...I had to capture it!
 The first order of business on the second day was renting a car. We got this very nice Lexus!!
 A look at the inside.
 And yes, I was forced to drive it some. Talk about being scared---my knuckles were white!! WHEW---it was such a crazy experience to be on the wrong side of the car and driving on the wrong side of the road!! I now I have to get used to it but my, oh my.... my nerves were shot!!
I am still adjusting my sleep and eating schedule which is way harder than it seems! Can you say "serious jet lag" anyone???

I am happy to report that we did go house hunting yesterday...I'll be blogging about that soon! It was so much fun!! I can't wait to show you what we found--the good, the bad and the ugly!! Stay tuned!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

An Update to Our Big Moving Day!!

WARNING: The following post has absolutely nothing to do with school. So, if you are looking for some great idea for your classroom, this is not the post for you! 

This post is simply to update you, my fabulous readers and followers, with the shenanigans that I call my life. 

If you are a loyal follower (which I KNOW you are) then you already know that my family is moving soon. <If you missed this post the first go around, stop now, click here and read all about it!>  

Yes, we are still moving to England...and boy oh boy, time is moving quickly!!

We actually leave the country in less than 2 weeks!!  YIKES!! Where did all the time go? It felt like we had forever until we were leaving and now, all of the sudden, March is here and it's almost time to make our big move.

In fact, this week will be my last week with my school kiddos. After this week, Spring Break starts so this Friday will be my last day with them. Ughhh.... my stomach churns just writing that. I know that I am going to be an emotional wreck-- or as I like to call it, a HOT MESS!!

Since I last wrote to let you know about my big move, a lot has changed! 
We have sold our house, sold our 2 cars, sold more than half of our belongings (since the houses are so small over there), the movers packed us up, shipped our stuff across the world and we have moved into temporary lodging at our local base. 

The temporary lodging is not as bad as I thought it was going to be.  It's a lot smaller of course (picture a one bedroom, fully furnished apartment) but it has been very do-able for us.  I guess it is God's way of preparing us for our future smaller British house! And I thought that only having a little bit of our stuff with us would be so rough--but it hasn't been at all. I haven't truly missed anything. It just feels like we lead a way simpler life with a lot less extra "stuff"! It's amazing that what you thought was so important, really isn't once you don't have it.

So for now, I sit here thinking about this coming week.  I have determined that since my grades have been put in, it's my time to have fun with my school kiddos. It's my week to spoil my kids and really enjoy them! Too often, we forget to just have fun.  To often we are so rushed with everything we need to get done in a day and we forget that these little kids need us--all of us.  So this week, I have vowed to give them me.  I am going to plan fun activities to do with them like painting, playing with Play-dough, using sidewalk chalk and drawing. I am going to sit with them, chat with them, do puzzles with them and truly just enjoy them!!

I am also working on my going away gifts for them.  I will be showing you those soon!! I hope they love them!

My parents arrive later this week to visit us one last time in the states. It is sure to be a great time. They will be leaving for home a few days before we actually fly out of the country.  Why won't they see us off you ask? It's honestly because I'm not sure that either of us could do good-bye's at the airport on THE day.  Again, I'm already going to be a hot mess the day we leave and then to add saying bye to my parents would probably send me (and them) over the edge.  We all decided it would be best to just say "see ya later" a few days before the big day.  

I'll be back soon to show you my gift I'm making for all of my kiddos.  I really hope they love it. And of course, I'll keep you updated with our big move and I'll be sure to include pictures!!

Thanks for all of your love, support and prayers! 
I love you all.

Monday, March 3, 2014

New Math Box Goodies!

Happy Spring winter that won't end!!
Anybody else experiencing the ups and downs of Mother Nature?? It was nice and 65 degrees a week ago and then yesterday we got a fresh 4 inches of snow.  I am ready for spring already!! I can't take one more bit of snow... GO AWAY SNOW!!

Sorry I got distracted!
Well, my kiddos have been plugging along with their math skills. I was able to finally change out some of their math boxes the other day. You would have thought I had given them gold--they were all so excited! Really folks, they are usually pretty similar games, just with a new face! So far, the kids haven't caught on and I'm okay with that!!

Take a look at a few new things they are working on:

Numbers, number words, tally marks and base ten blocks!
I made the numbers up to 20 so that you can easily differentiate for your kiddos!
Addition Popsicles! They go up to 10+10 but I just pick out the cards I want to use and save the higher cards for my advanced kiddos.
Candy graphing- Students spin the paperclip, and graph their item. At the end they mark which item had the most and least marks!
All of the above are from my Candy Creations unit! 

Winter mug match up! 

Mitten addition!

I also printed this unit up too! I will put it in my math boxes tomorrow. Be sure to check it out if you need some St. Patrick's Day goodies!! 


This has nothing to do with my class but it was too funny not to share!  We had some pipe problems at school the other day. On my way to leave school, I caught a glimpse of what someone etched into the dirty glass on this Roto-Rooter truck...can you read it? It says, "Forget the fox...what did the plumber say?"  I got a good chuckle out of that!! ha ha ha 

Have a great week!
I'll keep my fingers crossed for spring to show up soon!!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

What is that I see? The SUN!!

What is that I see? 
It's a bright blue sky, a beautiful sun and NO snow on the ground- finally!!
About a week or so ago, we had 12 inches of snow on the ground... and I'm happy to finally report that Mr. Sun has melted it all away! 

Isn't that just a gorgeous picture of the sky??  I love it!!

I even had to take a picture of what the temperature got up to today!! (Don't mind the fact that I didn't take the picture until 6:00...my kids and I were having a blast outside while it lasted!)

So, what's a teacher to do when the snow melts and the temperature rises???  
We go outside for math of course!

The kids were elated to find out that if they focused on practicing addition stories, they would be rewarded with some extra play time outside.  This math lesson went wonderfully---everyone was focused, happy and eager to work!  I simply called out addition number stories and the students wrote down what they heard. (We are still working on the correct way to write addition problems using the addition symbol and the equal sign, but we are progressing!)

Here the kids are working so well!
Here are few of their addition problems!  Not to shabby!!  

Mr. Weatherman says the temperature is supposed to still be rather nice again tomorrow.....we shall see.  I sure hope he's right--and I know the kids do too!!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Our 100th Day Of School!

We recently had our 100th day of school!
It's such a fun day filled with tons of activities and the kids were so excited to finally celebrate! The day was so bust that the kids did not ask me once "is it time to go home yet?" I'd call that a successful day! 

Here is a run down of everything we did! It may seem like a lot but this particular day we did not have any specials so we had to stay busy!!

This was their morning sheet.  Just an easy little coloring sheet!
100 stickers--I may be so much of a sticker hoarder that I had PLENTY of stickers for my 19 kiddos and many, many more left over! 
Hershey Kiss seek-and-find!  I hid 100 kisses around the room.  They each had a garage sale sticker on the bottom of them that contained a number.  They had to bring me their kiss and put their number sticker on our blank 100's chart. 
I found these quick cute hats off makinglearningfun.com.   
The kids loved wearing something on their head all day! 
We made a HUGE gum ball machine! The kids used bingo daubers to add the gum balls in the machine.  I made the machine out of butcher paper so that it was ready to go before we started. Every student got to add 5 gum balls of their choice and I added the last five!  
Counting fingers poster.  Each child got their hand painted and we added them all to one big sheet of butcher paper.  Once it was dry, we counted and labeled each finger to make sure we had 100! I forgot to take a final picture of the end result but trust me, it's cute!!
100 snacks-- The kids LOVED this one of course!! They couldn't wait to stuff themselves full of goodies!
I then asked the kiddos to take a minute and think about their favorite food!  I could hear them "yums" coming from their mouths.  Here a few that are too cute for words!!
(Pancakes)
(Chicken Nuggets) 
(Macaroni and Cheese)
(Turkey)

Next, it was time to pull out the paint! Each student got to put ten dots of different colors in their circles! We may have got a little messy but it was fun!!
Later, I asked the kids about being 100 years old!  Who wants to live to 100? What would you look like? Could you see and still walk?  Here are a few so, so, so cute drawings!
(This old man has two canes and little hair!)
(This old lady loved being old.  Check out her veins and wrinkles!!)

Next, we counted our toes! We reviewed that humans have ten toes all together.  We practiced counting by 10's to see if we had 100 toes in our classroom!
Who doesn't love ice cream??? They worked as table teams to complete this tall ice cream cone! Each student got to color a few ice creams and the cone. We then assembled it and talked about all of the yummy flavors the kids had made!!
We also did some good ol' number writing!  This took them a while since we don't practice writing to 100--we usually just say it! But like always, they rocked it! 
Last but not least, I finished the day by reading this great book!  The kids loved it!  I would recommend it to anyone celebrating the 100th day! 

I hope you liked what we did and got a few ideas to use in your classroom!
Most of these activities can be found in my 100th day of school packet found on TpT!
Click here to view it now!!